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McKay, Ramey qualify for MHSAA state final

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Senior Ave’r McKay and and sophomore Mackenzie Ramey qualified for the MHSAA Division 1 state final at their regional meet Friday, May 19, at Saginaw Heritage.

McKay qualified with a time of 59.17 in the 400-meter dash, taking second place and setting a personal record.

Ramey took fifth in shot put with a distance of 36 feet, 6.25 inches, becoming a state additional qualifier.

Mr. Mike Simms, girls coach, was impressed with the girls’ performances.

“Ave’r ran her season best time in the 400 and Mackenzie threw her second best distance of the year in the shot put,” Simms said. “They are very impressive athletes that just love to compete.”

McKay was excited to make another appearance at the state final.

Ave’r (McKay) executed the (400-meter) race plan perfectly by running her personal best time of 59.17.”

— Mr. Paul Adas, track coach

“She was just all smiles after the race and seemed very satisfied at the result,” Simms said. “Ave’r still has some unfinished business and has her eyes set on scoring  at the state meet.”

Mr. Paul Adas, boys coach, trained McKay this season and was impressed with how she ran.

“Ave’r executed the race plan perfectly by running her personal best time of 59.17, and she is seeded ninth overall for the state meet,” Adas said. “The weather was cold and windy, so I thought she performed very well for the conditions.”

Adas and McKay discussed a strategy to help her place as high as she could.

“We discussed not only qualifying for states but to run a time that would seed her high so she will be in one of the fast heats at states,” Adas said. “The race plan for the 400 meters was to race the girl  (Briana Walker) from Saginaw Heritage who had a better seed time than Ave’r. She focused on staying close to her and finishing to the best of her ability.”

In addition to scoring in the 400, McKay scored in the 200.

She came out of the semifinals seeded fifth but then finished fourth. McKay ran a 26.93 in the 200 final.

At the shot put, Simms knew what the state final qualifying distance was.

Being a first-year shot putter, Ramey was confused on what her distance meant.

She (Makenzie Ramey) doesn’t quite understand how good that is for a first-year shot putter, let alone a sophomore.”

— Mr. Mike Simms, track coach

“At first,” Simms said, “I was more excited than her (Ramey) when they read off the distance because I immediately knew that would get her to the state meet as an additional qualifier regardless of her place in the regional.

“She doesn’t quite understand how good that is for a first-year shot putter, let alone a sophomore. ”

Simms is impressed with not only McKay and Ramey’s performances, but the performance of the team as a whole.

“Overall, the girls performed as well as we could as a team. The competition at the regional level in Division 1 is tough,” Simms said. “Savannah Jones ran her best time in the two mile (12:56.99) and … our 800 girls (Nisha Hartley, 2:45.61, and Emma Bishoff, 2:51.11,) ran well under the conditions.”

Simms looks forward to the future for his team.

“We keep on improving and the girls’ attitudes are good,” he said. “We are looking forward to competing at the league meet and watching our two qualifiers at East Kentwood for the state meet.”

Although no boys qualified for the state final, a few Hornets scored and earned regional medals.

Junior Taveon Harris placed fifth in the 100 with a time of 11:53.

He (Taveon Harris) ran very well, considering how cold it was and the headwind that all 100-meter runners had to run into.”

— Mr. Paul Adas, track coach

Adas was satisfied with Harris’ performance.

“Taveon had to run semifinals for the first time this season,” Adas said. “He ran very well, considering how cold it was and the headwind that all 100-meter runners had to run into.”

In the 300 hurdles, senior Hunter Stanley finished sixth in 43.05.

Adas said he was pleased with Stanley’s race.

“Hunter Stanley competed extraordinarily well in the 300-meter hurdles,” Adas said. “He was seeded fifth and finished fourth in the fast heat.  Unfortunately, two runners in the previous heat beat his time and he finished sixth overall.”

Sophomore Eddie Harris placed eighth in shot put with a distance of 45-10.50.

“Eddie Harris competed well against a strong field of throwers,” Adas said.  “He made the finals seeded ninth and moved up one position in the finals to earn a medal.”

In addition, the 1600-relay team of Stanley, Raydoffa Braziel, Tommy Plunkey, and Taveon Harris placed eighth in 3:40.72.

The girls team finished in 13th place with 17 points, while the boys placed 15th with 9 points.

Davison won the girls regional with 85.5 points, while Saginaw Heritage was the runner-up with 72.

In the boys regional, Traverse City Central beat Traverse City West 103.5 to 101 for the championship.

The state final will be held at East Kentwood, Saturday, June 3. 

The boys and girls track teams will compete in the Metro League championships Wednesday, May 24, at Brandon.

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McKay, Ramey qualify for MHSAA state final